The following is the keynote speech I delivered on September 19, 2015 for the 2nd Annual Cemetery Seminar, sponsored by the Hunterdon Co. Historical Society and others. It is somewhat modified to make it more readable, less like a speech.
WILLIAMSON. The Williamsons of Hunterdon County were two separate families. One settled in East Amwell, the other in Delaware Township, although both places were originally part of Amwell Township. The genealogy of this family is extensive, and I expect to write much more about them in the future.
Pine Hill Cemetery is one of the most interesting of the old family burial grounds in Hunterdon County. I have written about it before, in an article that listed the known graves with some biographical information. But I had just scratched the surface; there is so much more to be said.
Back in February, I published an article on the cemetery connected with the Locktown Baptist church. Previously I have written about the Baptist congregation here as well as the Locktown Christian Church and its Cemetery. It seems appropriate now to include Mr. Bush’s own history of this neighborhood, which was published in the Hunterdon Democrat, on May 22, 1930. Along with the churches, Mr. Bush discusses the school house, the distillery and the Locktown Hotel, which began its life as a humble tavern, and also some of the old families, like the Chamberlins, Heaths, Lairs, Rittenhouses, Smiths and Suttons. Photographs in this article were provided by Paul Kurzenberger.
Having published Mr. Bush’s article, “The ‘Oregon’ and Other Schools,” and then a follow-up on Duck’s Flat, I thought I was done with this neighborhood for now. But I recently found another article by Mr. Bush continuing the story of Ducks’ Flat school. This article has allowed me to identify the mystery school I referred to previously, located down the road from the Ducks’ Flat school that Mr. Bush was familiar with. But I’ll wait until Mr. Bush has concluded before explaining.
By Marfy Goodspeed in Bonham, Bray, Dalrymple, Delaware Township, Families, Kingwood Township, Lair, Locktown, Myers, Opdycke, Rittenhouse, Sutton, Williamson 8 Comments Tags: cemeteries, early settlers
There has been a Baptist Church in Locktown since the early 19th century, and a cemetery associated with it. The church and the cemetery were located on land belonging to Daniel Rittenhouse, whose home was a short distance west of Locktown on the Kingwood-Locktown Road. Most of the names in this cemetery are of families that lived nearby in Kingwood and Delaware Townships, many of them descendants of original German immigrants. Many of the original stones are now missing, even ones that were inventoried in the 1940s. Old cemeteries are hard to preserve.
Ducks’ Flat School, Crossroads School and Their Teachers
Testing a Greeny’s Nerve
by Egbert T. Bush, Stockton. N. J.
published in the Hunterdon Co. Democrat, December 18, 1930
This article by Mr. Bush is a perfect complement to a recent blog post, “Amos Romine’s Beloved Farm.” It is one of my favorite Bush articles. Because there is so much to say about the people he mentions, I will refrain from interrupting him and leave my comments for the end.
As a follow-up to my recent article on the history of the Locktown Christian Church, here is a list of the people known to be buried in the cemetery adjacent to the church.
A visit to this interesting cemetery will quickly reveal that there are many graves here that are unmarked. So it is impossible to know who might be the earliest person buried here. The earliest gravestone is for Charity Alley who died in 1843, although Cornelius Williamson Carrell might have died a couple years before that. Oddly enough, Ms. Alley comes first on the list. The last known grave to be added was for Arthur E. Jungblut in 1999.
“Poor Horace” was Horace Greeley (1811-1872), founder, publisher and editor of the New York Tribune, a very influential newspaper during Greeley’s lifetime. He was also one of the founders of the new Republican Party in 1854. He was a vigorous opponent of slavery, and promoted many idealistic causes. In 1872 he was the candidate of both the Liberal Republican party and the Democratic Party against Republican Ulysses S. Grant, who was running for a second term. Despite the corruption of Grant’s administration, Greeley lost the electoral college in a landslide.
In 2009, I published an article about this interesting cemetery on the website The Delaware Township Post. This coming June, this cemetery will be the focus of a celebration; most of the original Williamson farm has been purchased from Bryce Thompson by the N. J. Conservation Foundation in partnership with the State of New Jersey, Hunterdon County and Delaware Township. The cemetery is part of this new addition to preserved lands in our town. I am delighted! Here is the article: Continue reading »
Overseers of Roads
At the first town meeting, the Township Committee voted that $1,000 was to be raised for making and repairing roads. Municipalities were responsible for their roads, while the county took responsibility for the bridges. Generally, it was the landowners along the roads who maintained them, so you can imagine what condition they were in: dust in the summer, mud in the spring and downright impassible in the winter, unless you had a sleigh. The township named many people to be Overseers of Roads. It’s hard to say exactly what their responsibilities were. Most likely, they managed the work that was ordered by the Surveyors of Highways. Continue reading »